INTERVIEW | Charlie Hides
Massachusetts born Charlie Hides is definitely the man of the moment. If you haven’t yet stumbled across his hilarious YouTube channel then you’re seriously missing out.
Writer, comedy performer, prop-maker, video editor and dab hand with a sewing machine, Charlie is best known for his phenomenally successful Madonna vs. Gaga videos which have been an international sensation. He’s given us his inimitable Cher, Adele, Bieber and Sue Sylvester, amongst many others, as well as his original creations; born again Christian Loretta Lee Jackson, gold digger Kandi Kane Baxter and single mum from the ghetto Laquisha Jonz. He’s also had regular spots on the London scene, opened for Girls Aloud and performed for Elton John. Is there no stopping him?
What gave you the idea for the Charlie Hides TV YouTube Channel?
For year I’d been showing short videos in my live show to allow me to do costume changes and I was getting a lot of requests for dvd’s. For simplicity Youtube was the perfect platform to put some of those older videos… but once those videos were on line they started getting viewed by people all over the world, not just people who’d seen my live shows… I quickly realized I had an opportunity to start creating original content just for YouTube… the rest is history.
You must have been born with a gene of utter fabulousness? At what age did you first start dragging up?
As a kid I was in school shows and entertained my family with different characters. I used to do impersonations of my classmates and teachers and of TV personalities. The first time I did actual drag was as a teen ager as a way to sneak into nightclubs when I was still underage.
I’ve read that you work on the videos single handed in your house, which looks lovely, by the way. I understand it takes you 20 to 30 hours to film each video. How do you find the time and energy?
Thanks, I had just finished renovating my house just before I launched the channel so I had a lot of room to film in. I have so much fun making the videos, I don’t consider it work. Sometimes I come home from a gig and film till 4 in the morning but I keep going as long as I’m having fun.
Have you had any strange reactions from the neighbours or casual visitors?
The day I filmed the Exorcist scene for my Halloween video. The guy from SKY showed up to install a new box in the bedroom. There were lights and camera all around the bed and I still had on some green make up. The look on his face was priceless.
The amount of time you spend as Madonna must pose a risk. Do you find yourself slipping into Madonna type diva mode in the queue at Waitrose or chasing young Brazilians?
(Laughs) No, but I do sometimes slip into different characters when I get cold callers trying to sell me double glazing or a PPI refund. Liza is the most effective at getting THEM to hang up.
Have you had any feedback from any of the celebrities you perform as?
Kylie has been very sweet and said some very nice things about me on Twitter and in interviews. And I’ve heard that Cher has started using some of my catch phrases with her sisters and friends.
The world of modern celebrity has some rich pickings for parody. Do you have any new characters planned for the winter?
There are several celebs that are known for their bad behaviour that are just screaming to be parodied. I’m working on an idea for a recurring series, Lunchtime with Lindsay. I’ve only done Lindsay Lohan once and I’m really looking forward to having her getting drunk while trying to do cooking segments with various celebs.
Check out Charlie’s huge catalogue of videos here: http://www.youtube.com/user/CharlieHidesTV
Charlie’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/CharlieHidesTV